If the recent Porsche 911 Speedster was a little too out of reach for you, then here’s some good news. The Porsche 718 range in Malaysia has just been graced by the arrival of the Boxster Spyder and Cayman GT4, with base prices starting from RM970k and RM999k respectively.
The pair made their grand debut in June last year and are both the performance flagships of the 718 Cayman and 718 Boxster line-ups. Power comes from a 4.0 litre naturally-aspirated flat-six engine that produces 420 PS and 420 Nm of torque, and the uprated engine revs to 8,000 rpm. Note that this engine isn’t an adaptation of the 991.2 911 GT3‘s lump (which revs to 9,000 rpm), but rather a re-bored and NA version of the 3.0 litre turbo unit from the 992 Carrera range.
A six-speed manual transmission is the sole gearbox on offer, which sends power from the mid-mounted engine to the rear wheels. Both cars manage the century sprint in 4.4 seconds and would break past the 300 km/h barrier (301 km/h for the Spyder and 304 km/h for the GT4). The engine features cylinder deactivation (a sign of the times) for improved fuel efficiency, while the gearbox gets dynamic rev-matching.
Porsche’s high-performance GT chassis is standard here, featuring race-derived lightweight spring-strut axles with adjustable camber, ride height, toe angle, and anti-roll bars. Porsche Active Suspension Management is also standard, while the Porsche Stability Management operates at a higher degree of sensitivity.
On the subject of grip, there’s Porsche Torque Vectoring with mechanical rear differential lock, and the sports cars are shod with mixed ultra-high performance Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tyres. Braking comes courtesy of internally ventilated and drilled rotors, clamped with huge aluminium monobloc fixed calipers. Customers can upgrade to the Porsche Ceramic Composite Brake (PCCB), should they fancy.
Options for the GT4 include the Clubsport package, which nets an additional rear steel roll bar, hand-held fire extinguisher, and six-point seatbelt harness for the driver. The Spyder Classic pack, meanwhile, comes with a nice two-tone Bordeaux Red/Black cabin for a more exquisite finish.
In terms of design, both cars get honeycomb mesh inserts up for the intake that maximise air flow, full LED headlights and tail lights with signature four-point DRLs, 20-inch alloys, and optimised aerodynamic parts.
In the case of the Cayman GT4, the prominent rear wing produces 20% more downforce than its predecessor, or roughly 12 kg more downforce at 200 km/h. The newly-designed single-chamber arch rear exhaust silencer accounts for 30% of downforce on the GT4’s rear axle, and all these yield up to a 50% increase in downforce without adversely affecting drag.
The Boxster Spyder, on the other hand, gets a retractable rear wing that deploys at 120 km/h. Together with the new diffuser, Porsche says it’s the first Boxster to generate downforce at the rear axle. The fabric soft top is also manually operated, because lightweight. So, between the two, which would you pick?